TiVo has finally revealed its next generation of set-top boxes, both of which will further blur the lines between broadcast and broadband content. The TiVo Premiere will cost $299 and hold up to 45 hours of HD video, while the TiVo Premiere XL will cost $499 and hold up to 150 hours of HD video. The boxes will also support Netflix movie streams, Blockbuster On Demand, YouTube and Pandora.
The real innovation of these new devices, says TiVo CEO Tom Rogers, is the new user interface. Rogers says that consumers need a better way to search and wade through a nearly infinite amount of content that broadband provides. The new TiVo hardware and software solve this issue, says Rogers:
“The problem is that consumers can’t get all that broadband content to the TV, and even if they could, they couldn’t navigate it,”
TiVo’s new user interface integrates broadcast and broadband content into the same menu. Content can be searched by title as well as by the names of cast members in movies and TV shows. Rogers thinks that the new UI will dramatically simplify most users’ experiences:
“People like the idea that there is broadband content available to them on the TV, but that doesn’t make it easy and it doesn’t make it usable. . . [The goal is to enable users to] browse, navigate and search, and do it in a way that can guide [them] through limited choice.”
The easier searching will also be facilitated by a new remote that includes a QWERTY keyboard. Also, because the new TiVo platform is Flash-based, third-party developers will be able to create games and apps that were previously not possible on set-top boxes.
Insiders, will you be purchasing or upgrading to one of TiVo’s new boxes? How do you see them competing with the ever-increasing number of set-top boxes out there?